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Colorado Avalanche Game Day: Looking to bounce back against the Golden Knights

The Avalanche look for two points to get back into the top Wildcard spot

NHL: Colorado Avalanche at Vegas Golden Knights Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

After what was likely their worst game of the season on Thursday night, the Colorado Avalanche look to bounce back in a big way against the Pacific Division-leading Vegas Golden Knights.

This is the second time the teams will meet this season. The Golden Knights won a lopsided 7-0 decision back in October, but this is a different Avalanche team. The game this afternoon will show us how this Avalanche team handles adversity.

If Colorado can hang onto the first Wildcard playoff spot, they will end up playing Vegas in the first round of the playoffs. A win today would go a long way in establishing some confidence in case that matchup comes to fruition.

This is a big game against a very good team, it’s the kind of win the Avs need if they hope to be taken seriously in the playoff race.

Colorado Avalanche

Despite an embarrassing loss to the Los Angeles Kings, Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen were both able to extend their point streak. They’re going to have to lead the charge if the Avs hope to rebound against another good team. Something tells me we are going to see a huge game from the top line.

Everyone was bad Thursday night. The whole team needs to be better.

Carl Soderberg has missed the past two games with an illness and his absence was very noticeable. The Avs hope to have their shut down center back in the lineup this afternoon.

Projected Lineup

Gabriel Landeskog - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen

Tyson Jost - J.T. Compher - Sven Andrighetto

Matt Nieto - Carl Soderberg - Blake Comeau

Colin Wilson - Alexander Kerfoot - Gabriel Bourque

Nikita Zadorov - Tyson Barrie

Patrik Nemeth - Erik Johnson

Duncan Siemens - Samuel Girard

Vegas Golden Knights

Vegas comes into the game with the ability to clinch a playoff birth this afternoon - something that seemed unfathomable for an expansion team that most expected to be at the bottom of the league.

With an even 100 points on the season, the Golden Knights have benefitted from great home ice advantage, but still have a very solid 21-12-4 record on the road this season.

Projected Lineup:

Starting Goalies

After being pulled Thursday night, Semyon Varlamov is back in net tonight.

For Vegas, it looks like Malcolm Subban is going to get the call.

The two goalies have an identical .917 sv% this season.